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Report of Regents P-12 Education Committee to The Board of Regents

Your P-12 Education Committee held its scheduled meeting on September 16, 2015.  All members were present except for Regent Brown, who was excused.

ACTION ITEMS

Academic Intervention Services [P-12 (A) 1]
Your Committee recommends that paragraph (2) of subdivision (ee) of section 100.2 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education be amended as submitted, effective September 17, 2015, as an emergency measure upon a finding of the Board of Regents that such action is necessary for the preservation of the general welfare to immediately establish modified requirements for the provision of Academic Intervention Services (AIS) for the 2015-16 school year and thereby ensure their timely implementation, for purposes of providing school districts with flexibility to address the change in student rates of proficiency on the 2014-2015 grades 3-8 assessments in English Language Arts and Mathematics, and ensuring that during the 2015-2016 school year districts continue to maintain on file a uniform process by which the district determines whether to offer AIS to students who scored at or above the specified cut scores but below Level 3 on grade 3-8 English Language Arts or Mathematics State assessments. It is also recommended that a committee be established during the 2015-16 school year to examine the effectiveness of AIS and to make recommendations about revisions to AIS regulations for 2016-17.  The motion to approve was carried.  Regents Rosa, Johnson and Collins voted against.

School Receivership [P-12 (A) 2]
Your Committee recommends that section 100.19 of the Regulations of the Commissioner of Education is added, as submitted, effective September 21, 2015, as an emergency action upon a finding by the Board of Regents that such action is necessary for the preservation of the general welfare in order to immediately adopt revisions to the proposed amendment in response to public comment, and to otherwise ensure that the emergency rule adopted at the June 2015 Regents meeting, as revised, remains continuously in effect until the effective date of its adoption as a permanent rule.  The motion passed by a unanimous vote of all present.  Regent Tilles stated that his vote on the regulation did not signify confidence in the law. 

Democracy Prep Endurance Charter School [P-12 (A) 3]
Your Committee recommends that the Board of Regents finds that: (1) the charter school meets the requirements set out in Article 56 of the Education Law, and all other applicable laws, rules and regulations; (2) the charter school can demonstrate the ability to operate in an educationally and fiscally sound manner; (3) granting the request to revise the charter is likely to improve student learning and achievement and materially further the purposes set out in subdivision two of section twenty-eight hundred fifty of Article 56 of the Education Law; and (4) granting the request to revise the charter would have a significant educational benefit to the students expected to attend the charter school, and the Board of Regents therefore approves the charter revision for Democracy Prep Endurance Charter School and amends the provisional charter accordingly.

Democracy Prep Charter School and Democracy Prep Charter School-Harlem [P-12 (A) 4]
This item was deferred to the September 17th meeting of the Board of Regents pending receipt of assurances from the school regarding the Pathways program. 

MOTION FOR ACTION BY FULL BOARD
Madam Chancellor and Colleagues: Your P-12 Education Committee recommends, and we move, that the Board of Regents act affirmatively upon each recommendation in the written report of the Committee's deliberations at its meeting on September 17, 2015, copies of which have been distributed to each Regent. 

MATTERS NOT REQUIRING BOARD ACTION
Workgroup on Common Core Regents Exams [P-12 (D) 1] – the Committee discussed questions raised about three aspects of the Common Core Regents Exam in Algebra I: (1) the low percentage of students who achieved at Level 4 and Level 5; (2) the conversion chart, in which students need many fewer raw score points for the Level 2 and Level 3; and many more raw score points for Levels 4 and 5; and (3) concerns that college personnel will be confused by the changes in the test when they review information on student transcripts. The lower percentage of students scoring at Level 4 and above, as compared to past student performance on the Regents Exam in Integrated Algebra, is a direct result of implementing higher learning standards.  Department staff were directed by the Board of Regents to convene a group of educators to consider and advise on the technical and policy questions raised, including whether a new scale should be adopted to address the concerns about the conversion chart and transcript review by college personnel. 

Transition to Common Core-aligned Regents Examinations in Mathematics (Algebra II) [P-12 (D) 2] – the Committee discussed proposed amendments to regulations that would provide flexibility with respect to the Regents Examination in Algebra II (Common Core) by allowing, at the discretion of the applicable school district, students receiving Algebra II (Common Core) instruction to take the Regents Examination in Algebra 2/Trigonometry aligned to the 2005 Learning Standards in addition to the Regents Examination in Algebra II (Common Core), and meet the mathematics requirement for graduation by passing either examination. This flexibility would be permitted until the final administration of the Algebra 2/Trigonometry Regents examination in January 2017. This proposed amendment will be presented to the Regents for adoption in December.

Appeal of Scores for the Safety Net Local Diploma for Students with Disabilities [P-12 (D) 3 REVISED] – the Committee discussed proposed amendments to regulations that would allow all students with disabilities otherwise eligible to graduate in January 2016 or thereafter, and who score up to three points below a score of 55 on a Regents exam after at least two attempts would be eligible to receive the Local Diploma via appeal. For students who take, but cannot pass Regents exams after one or more attempts, the Department would like to also explore the feasibility of other State assessment option(s) that would ensure that students are held to the same standards, but are provided more than one means to demonstrate proficiency in the same State standards as are assessed through the Regents exams.  A Department team with representatives from the Offices of Assessment, Curriculum and Instruction and Special Education will benchmark with other states, begin preliminary discussion with stakeholder groups and propose options for consideration by the Board of Regents by December 2015.

Online Learning Advisory Council [P-12 (I) 1] – the Committee was provided with an update on the work of the Online Learning Advisory Council.  Recommendations and a draft plan will be completed for the Commissioner’s review in late September. A draft of the report will be delivered to the governor, senate, and assembly for their review by October 1, 2015. A comment period will be open from October 1, 2015 through November 1, 2015 prior to completion and delivery of the final report by November 20, 2015. A presentation with recommendations will be provided to the Board of Regents at the November meeting.

Consent Agenda

The Board of Regents will take action on the following consent agenda items at their September 17, 2015 meeting.

  • School Use of an Opioid Antagonist
  • Self-Administration of Certain Medications by Students
  • School and District Accountability and New York State’s approved ESEA Flexibility Renewal Waiver
  • Instruction in Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation and the use of Automated External Defibrillators
  • Registration of Public Schools
  • Storefront Academy Charter School Assumed Name Revision
  • Reimbursement for Preschool Special Education Itinerant Services

Associated Agenda Item

Meeting Date: 
Wednesday, September 16, 2015 - 1:00pm

Committee